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Jump at the chance to celebrate EuroPride in Malta.Proudly assuming a significant role in the upcoming EuroPride Valletta 2023 festivities, Malta’s legendary hotel, The Phoenicia, will be front and centre for the country’s event of the year.  Malta seems to be buzzing with anticipation months ahead of the festival from 7-17 September.

The Phoenicia Deluxe Harbour View Twin Room

The Phoenicia Deluxe Harbour View Twin Room.

It makes perfect sense that The Phoenicia would be a focal point.  Its superb location just outside the Renzo Piano-designed City Gate makes the charms of Valletta immediately accessible while at the same time providing refuge from the busy streets of the city for those who need to recharge their phones or their batteries during the course of the day and night.  Comfortable rooms and suites, 132 in total, are designed to a high standard; the unfailingly friendly and helpful staff likewise embraces high standards.  No task is too small or large for the concierges at The Phoenicia, who take pride in making the guest experience maximally pleasant.  From the front desk to the back of the house, all of The Phoenicia’s employees seem to love their jobs; this includes General Manager Robyn Pratt, a phenomenally positive thinker who shares her sunny Queensland aura with her staff.

The Phoenicia Palm Court Lounge area

The Phoenicia Palm Court Lounge area

As embodied by The Phoenicia, a stay in Malta is an experience of acceptance with a live and let live attitude.  Cognizant of this Mediterranean nation’s more carefree lifestyle and agreeable climate, many LGBTQI+ people from other countries have chosen to make Malta their home.  So great is the demand for Malta as an LGBTQI+ travel destination that Q Travel, a company specialising in tours of Malta for people with alternative interests, keeps showing the country to visitors worldwide.  Take a walking tour of Valletta with a gay guide, charter a catamaran for a day out on the brilliant blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, or take the famous women’s history tour to learn about the feminine aspect of the country’s masculine past.  Very appropriately, excursions with a trans perspective are led by a trans guide.  Q Travel owner Artúr Lengyel, an unabashed fan of Malta, is a vivacious proponent of the country as a place to visit and live; he has conducted extensive academic research into gay life in Malta and is one of Malta’s leading authorities on the subject.  His company’s tour guides are experts in their fields, a factor that sometimes allows unanticipated privileges such as entering historical properties not usually open to the public.  Thank you, Denis!

The Phoenicia Palm Court Lounge area

The Phoenicia Palm Court Lounge area.

A famous photo of the future Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip dancing the night away in The Phoenicia’s ballroom illustrates their happy years as a young couple living in Malta during Philip’s time in the Royal Navy.  The Phoenicia has hosted many crowned visitors over the years; come September, there will be more than one queen dragging herself up to one of the hotel’s comfortable rooms after an entertaining night of festivities.  Expect to party with gusto before lounging by The Phoenicia’s expansive pool deck, where heavenly bodies will be seen in the sky and on the lounge chairs.

The Malta Tourism Authority’s website contains helpful information about the tiny country’s big attractions, which are surprisingly many.  From ancient archaeological sights to fine dining venues, they can all be found at VisitMalta.com.

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Written by: Robert La Bua